Deal reached on paid sick leave bill

Council Speaker Christine Quinn announces the legislation Friday at City Hall. Credit: William Alatriste
Council Speaker Christine Quinn announces the legislation Friday at City Hall. Credit: William Alatriste

Thousands of companies in New York City will soon be required to give their employees paid sick leave.

Under a deal announced by Council Speaker Christine Quinn’s office Thursday evening, companies with 20 or more employees will be required to offer five paid sick days beginning April 1, 2014. On Oct. 1, 2015, it will expand to include companies with 15 or more workers. 

“We have a good, strong and sensible piece of legislation that recognizes the needs of everyday New Yorkers and the realities that our struggling small businesses face,” Quinn said in a statement.

She said the 2014 start date gives businesses extra time to recover before absorbing the extra costs.

The bill also ensures the requirement will only go into effect if the economy continues to improve, according to Quinn’s office.

Enforcement will be complaint driven, according to the speaker’s office, and handled by the Department of Consumer Affairs. The maximum fine will be $2,500.

Quinn had blocked a vote on the paid sick leave bill for three years, arguing that it would hurt the city’s economy. She drew criticism from her fellow mayoral contenders, her colleagues in the City Council and activists, including feminist Gloria Steinem.

Under the bill, companies that have fewer than 15 employees will be forced to offer unpaid days off to sick workers. Companies will be legally forbidden from firing employees for taking sick time off, paid or unpaid.

Advocates had originally wanted a bill that would apply to companies with five or more employees. Despite the compromises made, the deal is a victory for labor unions and liberal activists who have long rallied for it. They say the legislation will affect one million workers who until now could not take time off out of fear that they would lose pay or their job.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg vowed Friday he will veto the bill.

“It is crucial that we continue doing everything we can to allow businesses to grow,” he said. “While this compromise version of the bill is better than previous iterations, it will still hurt small businesses and stifle job creation.”

There is expected to be enough votes in the City Council to override the veto.


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

City Council committee moves Williamsburg's Domino refinery deal…

The deal to turn the old Domino Sugar refinery along the Williamsburg waterfront into a new housing complex is one Council vote away from approval.

National

On newly released tape, 'Squeaky' Fromme says was…

Manson Family member Squeaky Fromme told a mental health examiner in newly released interview the "X" she carved in her forehead was meant to separate her from "the system."

National

Electric Zoo tickets on sale Tuesday as festival…

Electric Zoo tickets go on sale Tuesday. The festival announced plans to amp up security after two attendees died last year from apparent drug overdoses.

Local

VIDEO: Conflicting accounts after horse carriage falls over…

There were conflicting accounts about what caused a horse carriage to fall near Central Park and Fifth Avenue on Wednesday.

Movies

Tribeca: Nikki Reed on going funny for a…

"Intramural" star Nikki Reed talks about being the straight person in a broad comedy, spending time in Austin and how "Thirteen" was a "miracle."

The Word

Taylor Swift has a hard time leaving the…

We're entranced by these photos of poor Taylor Swift leaving her Tribeca apartment.

Going Out

Pop-up cat cafe opens to long lines in…

The country's first pop-up cat cafe opened in New York on Thursday.

Movies

Interview: Steven Knight on making Tom Hardy normal…

Filmmaker Steven Knight discusses his new movie "Locke," set entirely within a car and featuring only one actor on-screen: Tom Hardy.

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24…

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April 24 version

MLB

5 infamous pitcher ejections for cheating

Never fear Yankees fans, Michael Pineda is far from the first MLB pitcher to be thrown out of a game for cheating.

MLB

Yankees pitcher Michael Pineda ejected for using pine…

Pineda was thrown out of the game against the Red Sox Wednesday for having pine tar on his neck -- for all the world to see.

NFL

Giants 2014 regular season schedule

The Giants will play five prime-time games — against the Lions, Redskins, Eagles, Colts and Cowboys.

Parenting

New study: Inside the wage gap between boys…

According to a new study, there's a wage gap between boys and girls, with boys earning more allowance for less chores.

Tech

From Apple TV to Fire TV, big changes…

Apple is set to launch a new generation of it's Apple TV, which grossed over $1 billion in 2013. But competition from Amazon and Google looms.

Style

Katy Perry releases a new Claire’s collection

Katy Perry expands her empire by releasing an accessories collection at Claire's.

Style

MAC & Proenza Schouler collection unveiled

MAC Cosmetics is releasing a new collection with Proenza Schouler.